Bungalow plan divides vote

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A plan to build two semi-detached bungalows for elderly tenants sparked accusations of overcrowding by some members of Sleaford Town Council.

Councillors were commenting on a proposal by North Kesteven District Council to site a pair of two bedroom bungalows on land off Woodside Avenue as part of the authority’s ongoing programme of building new social housing.

It evenly split Wednesday’s Applications Committee, with the casting vote required from chairman Jan Mathieson who voted in favour, saying the need for new housing was the overriding factor.

Coun Ken Fernandes was strongly against what he saw as overcrowding, saying: “That is a prison cell, you are building a prizon cell.”

Coun Keith Dolby added: “They are shoe-horned into a very irregular piece of land with hardly any area for yard or garden.” He said two trees would be felled to make way and the plot was often used for parking by people using the nearby community hall.

Town and district councillor for the ward, Grenville Jackson disagreed, saying neighbours were happy to see it used and it would make no difference to parking.

A NKDC spokesman told The Standard: “There is considered to be adequate room for two standard two-bed bungalows here, with some garden. They are designed for older people or tenants with mobility needs and in compliance with space standards. The plan has been drawn up to make best use of under-used land.”